Library Research Models: A Guide to Classification, Cataloging, and ComputersPaperback
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- Publisher: Oxford University Press Inc
- Format: Paperback | 268 pages
- Dimensions: 137mm x 206mm x 20mm | 295g
- Publication date: 16 March 1995
- Publication City/Country: New York
- ISBN 10: 019509395X
- ISBN 13: 9780195093957
- Edition statement: Revised ed.
- Illustrations note: line figures
Most researchers, even with computers, find only a fraction of the sources available to them. As Library of Congress reference librarian Thomas Mann explains, researchers tend to work within one or another mental framework that limits their basic perception of the universe of knowledge available to them. Some, for example, use a subject-disciplinary method which leads them to a specific list of sources on a particular subject. But, Mann points out, while this method allows students and researchers to find more specialized sources, it is also limiting-they may not realize that works of interest to their own subject appear within the literature of many other disciplines. A researcher looking through anthropology journals, for example, might not discover that the MLA International Bibliography provides the best coverage of folklore journals. In Library Research Models, Mann examines the several alternative mental models people use to approach the task of research, and demonstrates new, more effective ways of finding information. Drawing on actual examples gleaned from 15 years' experience in helping thousands of researchers, he not only shows the full range of search options possible, but also illuminates the inevitable tradeoffs and losses of access that occur when researchers limit themselves to a specific method. In two chapters devoted to computers he examines the use of electronic resources and reveals their value in providing access to a wide range of sources as well as their disadvantages: what people are not getting when they rely solely on computer searches; why many sources will probably never be in databases; and what the options are for searching beyond computers. Thomas Mann's A Guide to Library Research Methods was widely praised as a definitive manual of library research. Ronald Gross, author of The Independent Scholar's Handbook called it "the savviest such guide I have ever seen-bracingly irreverent and brimming with wisdom." The perfect companion volume, Library Research Models goes even further to provide a fascinating look at the ways in which we can most efficiently gain access to our vast storehouses of knowledge.
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Thomas Mann received his Ph.D. from Loyola University of Chicago and his M.L.S. from Louisiana State University. A former private investigator, he has been a general reference librarian in the Main Reading Room of the Library of Congress since 1981. He is the author of A Guide to Library ResearchMethods.
'This is an interesting work.' Stuart Hannabuss, The Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen, Library Review '... this book should be read by all who make use of libraries for serious study ... Thomas Mann displays an understanding ... of the devices used in libraries to control stock. There is a useful and illuminating comparison of the traditional library science and workstation models. ... what is presented here is a very interesting, readable and useful examination of what we do in libraries and the reviewer recommends it to the two groups Mann identifies as his prime audience and the academics as well. Further, it should be required reading for those just entering the profession. If the book succeeds in raising awareness of the challenge to what is received wisdom about current catalogue technology it will make a valuable contribution to the literature and the practice of the profession of librarianship.' Rodney M Brunt. Leeds Metropolitan University, Journal of Documentation, vol.50,no.3